By Chris Thomas
July 12 (Reuters) – Most Southeast Asian stock markets rose
on Wednesday in line with broader Asia as fresh controversy over
U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration had little impact
on global equities, with investors looking ahead to Federal
Reserve Chair Janet Yellen’s comments later in the day.
U.S. stocks took a brief tumble overnight after emails
disclosed Trump’s eldest son welcomed help from a Russian lawyer
for his father’s 2016 election campaign, but the stocks reversed
their losses by close.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
rose 0.4 percent on Wednesday.
Ahead of Yellen’s testimony to Congress on the state of the
U.S. economy from 1400 GMT, two of her colleagues cited low wage
growth and muted inflation as reasons for caution on further
interest rate increases.
Philippine shares led the gains in Southeast Asia,
climbing as much as 1 percent to hit its highest in more than
three weeks, driven by real estate and telecom stocks.
Ayala Land rose as much as 2.4 percent, while SM
Prime Holdings advanced 2 percent.
The Philippines recorded a trade deficit of $2.753 billion
in May, the country’s worst in decades, data showed on Tuesday.
“It’s (trade deficit) a welcome development, and we see some
semblance of improvement on this side – it’s the sign of a
rising economy,” said Manny Cruz, an analyst with Manila-based
Asiasec Equities Inc.
Indonesia inched up 0.5 percent, helped by strong
gains in the financial sector. Bank Mandiri (Persero) Tbk PT
gained as much as 1.7 percent, while Bank Negara
Indonesia rose 1.5 percent.
Thai shares were up as much as 0.3 percent,
supported by industrials and financials, while Vietnam
rose as much as 0.6 percent, its biggest intraday percentage
gain in nearly two weeks.
Meanwhile, Singapore shares fell as much as 0.5
percent, with heavyweights DBS Group and Singapore
Telecommunications declining about 0.8 percent each.
Malaysian shares were largely flat. Industrial
production in May grew at a faster-than-expected pace of 4.6
percent, compared with a year earlier, data showed.
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS: Change at 0432 GMT
Change on day
Market Current Previous Close Pct Move
Singapore 3206.17 3218.8 -0.39
Bangkok 1572.73 1569.24 0.22
Manila 7931.74 7858.14 0.94
Jakarta 5795.38 5773.326 0.38
Kuala Lumpur 1753.65 1755.03 -0.08
Ho Chi Minh 773.58 769.36 0.55
Change on year
Market Current End 2016 Pct Move
Singapore 3206.17 2880.76 11.30
Bangkok 1572.73 1542.94 1.93
Manila 7931.74 6840.64 15.95
Jakarta 5795.38 5296.711 9.41
Kuala Lumpur 1753.65 1641.73 6.82
Ho Chi Minh 773.58 664.87 16.35
(Reporting by Chris Thomas; Additional reporting by Ambar
Warrick; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri)